In keeping to the 2019 hashtag for International Women’s Day, ‘Balance for the better’, four successful women discuss submission at home.
Patience Akyianu, Group Chief Executive Officer of Hollard Ghana Holdings Limited explained how she condenses her 55-letter title at work into a four-letter word at home – wife.
She made a startling statement: The higher I have gone the more submissive I have become – intentionally, she added, showing her full teeth and raising a finger for passionate emphasis. And whiles submission sounds subservient, she has found, it is a measure of maturity and wisdom.
Mrs. Akyianu noted submission can have a disarming ability to change a man set in his egos.
According to her, life is not really only about climbing the corporate ladder at all cost. Being at the top is a lonely place, the former MD of Barclays shared a popular equip.
“If you sack all those that are close to you, how do you survive socially and emotionally?” Mrs. Akyianu said and stressed her non-negotiable goal is to stay married.
“I really want to stay married and there are ways of staying married. You don’t create chaos and disharmony in your home and if it means submitting so that you can have a healthy relationship, why not?
“And with maturity, it doesn’t really matter. The more matured you are the more humble you are” she said.
“And the less important somethings became”, Principal of the National Banking College Abena Kessewa Brown at this point chipped in her experience much to the nodding agreement of Mrs Akyianu.
Abena shared her experience as a mother of one living with her husband in the US. There was disagreement over who should go bag a Masters after she had told her husband she wanted to go back to school. In the disagreements, she said she came to understand who does a Master first is not a matter of life and death. Hubby went, she stayed. He finished, she went. A double-track solution calmed the conflict.
For her a better word for submission is respect. That’s the bottomline. I submit to you because you respect me, she explained and went back into the days when submission was a matter of course.
“When you fall in love, the person can do no wrong...you don’t even see it” she laughed and indicated whiles these emotional view of love is unsustainable, the lesson of respect and submission can be sustained.
The host and the guest joined in to tease CEO of Charterhouse, Theresa Ayoade who runs a business with her husband, Iyiola Ayoade. She is a subordinate at work and subordinate at home, they laughed.
Photo: Abena Kessewa Brown – far left] and Theresa Ayoade [ R]
Submission is a “fine balancing act”, she said observing a life of not taking unilateral decisions is a “real challenge” especially for a woman who is an “alpha female”
She shared her tip, it is difficult to make progress through heated arguments. Find a calmer moment to reason out a disagreement. She allows her husband to have his way if he feels strongly about something and in her concessions, it sometimes gets her husband to come back again and say ‘let’s do it your way.
CEO of Jane’m Salon and SPA Janet Sunkwa-Mills who remembered mentoring a woman who earned more than her husband and flaunted her economic status as a superior bargaining chip at home.
That chip was sinking the ship at home and that is when Mrs. Sunkwa-Mills recalls stepping in.
Men are driven by their egos, she touched on a sociological truth. “When you touch a guy’s ego what do you expect?....financial capability does not mean a change in leadership”, Mrs Sunkwa-Mills explained.
She said she counselled her mentee to learn how to wield her power in much more subtle ways than the figures in her bank account. She called it the power of Eve giving Adam reason to eat an apple he knew was forbidden.
Women should understand their role of influencing decisions, she said and how to do it is wisdom. In her home, her husband is the leader of the house and she is the leader of the home, she let out a sentence that is food for thought.
She drew the attention of young married women to determine for themselves “what is more important to you?”
She acknowleged young women should be ambitious but also understand that what looks like a bone of contention at her home will in five years look like minced meat.
She referred to a divorcee who conceded that with the benefit of hindsight she would have let go those positions she held on to in marriage that contributed to a protracted conflict.
And so what is more important to you, she once again asked, this time with Abena joining in to stress the importance of the question.
Talking about positions, one position run through the one hour long conversation. It is that marriage is God’s idea. And in His blueprint for marriage, submission, is a pillar.
If it is God’s idea, they have learnt to play by His rules. Of course, in this blueprint of rules, they find help in solving problems, submitting to husbands and keeping the bond and the vow intact.
That help is prayer and the Holy Spirit, Patience let out the secret of the four women.
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